Vehicle Code 22101 CVC - Turning and Stopping and Turning Signals

Being a law-abiding driver in California means staying up to date on the driving code violations out there. Maybe you are learning about a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC violation citation preventatively. Or, you are trying to understand a recent letter you got in the mail. Regardless, we’ll cover the basics below, including:

What is Vehicle Code 22101 VC?

The best place to start is always with the most basic details. California’s legislature explains a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC violation as the following: “When an official traffic control device is placed as required in subdivisions (b) or (c), it is unlawful for a driver of a vehicle to disobey the directions of the official traffic control device.”

It sounds simple enough, and it is. In essence, you have to obey the traffic sign or light that is telling you to do (or not do) a certain thing at an intersection. However, it can look and feel a little different when it comes to actually being in a situation that could have you receiving a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC violation.

What does it mean to have violated Vehicle Code 22101 VC?

To help this make sense, let’s create a fictional driver in California named Teresa to design a few situations. This will help make it more logical.

Teresa comes up to the intersection and moves into the left-turning lane. Too late, she realizes she is in the wrong lane because she wants to go straight. When the light turns green to complete her turn, she drives straight ahead instead of turning left. She is guilty of a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC violation because she did not make the correct left turn when the traffic light told her.

In another situation, Teresa is coming up to a left turn lane on a roadway where she wants to turn left into an office’s parking lot. On the island next to this left turning lane is a sign that reminds drivers not to turn left between teh hours of 9-5 on business days. Teresa checks the time and sees it is 11:30 AM on a Tuesday. When there is a break in the traffic, she makes the turn, even knowing that she is not allowed to do so. In this instance, Teresa is guilty of a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC violation because she deliberately turned left when the sign explained that she was not allowed to.

Let’s say Teresa is coming up to an intersection and wants to turn right at the light. There is a sign at the light saying “no right on a red.” Despite this, Teresa turns right when it is clear to do so, even though the light is red. She is guilty of a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC violation because she deliberately disobeyed the sign.

As you can see, disobeying turning signals and signs can take many forms, but all follow a logical pattern. However, as with many vehicle code citations, there are some exceptions to know about!

The most common exception would be that Teresa comes to an intersection, and the straight lane is blocked by a collision or broken-down vehicle. Since the lane to continue straight is blocked and unusable, she would be allowed to continue straight via the left-turning lane or right-turning lane.

Another exception would be if Teresa had no choice but to disobey the traffic sign or traffic light. For example, there is a person in the car forcing her to drive erratically. Of course, this is an extreme example, but she would be considered innocent of a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC violation because she is not acting of her own volition.

The whole point of a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC violation is that you are deliberately and knowingly disobeying a clearly marked lane, sign, or traffic light.

What can I do about this violation?

If you have received a letter in the mail alerting you to a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC violation citation, you would have received a notice of a court date to enter your plea as well as a notice of what the punishment is for the traffic code violation.

This violation carries a fine of $238 and also an addition of 1 DMV point to your driving record. If you are guilty of this violation, you should enter your plea as such and then pay the ticket amount and court fees as soon as possible. If you are innocent and believe you qualify for an exception, you should enter your plea that way and have a licensed traffic court attorney to help you prove your case.

In some cases, you may be eligible for traffic school. If you are, this will be listed on your court letter. You can agree to attend traffic school and skip the traffic court date to help expedite the process. We’ll talk about that in detail a bit more later on.

Other possible Vehicle Code violation connections

Sometimes, similar traffic violations can be added to your mailed citation if they apply to your driving situation. Some of the most common connection points to a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC violation include the following:

  • Vehicle Code 22100: This code means that you are turning improperly at intersections or signs, mostly referring to the placement of the turn and the lane into which you are turning.
  • Vehicle Code 22100.5: This citation refers to making an illegal U-turn where a sign prevents it at an intersection.
  • Vehicle Code 21461: This is a more general code in which a citation is issued for disobeying marked lanes, signs, and lights.

Depending on the situation surrounding your citation, any or all of these can be added to your ticket, and you’ll have to pay the fees and accept the punishments for them during your court date. You might also find that the peace officer or court will use any or all of these in place of a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC citation.

Is this ticket eligible for traffic school?

As briefly mentioned above, certain citations have an option to attend traffic school if you are looking to reduce the punishment for your ticket. You’ll be happy to know that a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC citation is eligible for traffic school. There are a few exceptions to this, however. The first one is that you committed the offense in a commercial vehicle. Another is that you’ve already attended traffic school within the past 16 months or a different eligible ticket. If neither of these apply to you, you can consider traffic school to help make the citation easier for you.

If you’re interested in this option, you’ll want to make sure that you attend an accredited traffic school, such as us at MM TRAFFIC SCHOOL. Our programs are designed to be interactive, fun, educational, and memorable. After all, the most important final result of our program is that you return to driving as a more informed and law-abiding driver. We are constantly working on our classes and programs so that our current ones are the best possible.

The goal of attending a professional traffic school program is that you can learn about your citations as well as others and know how to avoid them in the future. This is why traffic school exists, and it’s why we are so careful in designing our programs.

Are you interested in learning more about our classes? Or do you want information about a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC citation? Please contact us, and we’ll be happy to give you more details. If you are looking for specific, personalized information on your situation resulting in the citation, please reach out to the court that issued the ticket to you.

How can I avoid a citation for a Vehicle Code 22101 VC violation?

Finding a way to avoid a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC citation is always going to be your best bet when getting on the road. Whether you are here proactively or retroactively, there is still a lot you can learn! Here are some details to help you stay free and clear from a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC citation violation in the future!

Firstly, pay attention to the lane markings when you approach an intersection. Most will say on them whether they are right/left turn only. If the markings are faded, you may also see signs on the islands that reiterate those traffic directions. 

Next, you’ll want to always remember that the law is the law. That is, don’t disobey a sign, light, or marking just because no one is around. Whether or not there is traffic, a citation is a very serious offense, especially when you get one with a DMV point punishment. Always take that potential seriously and obey the law!

Lastly, don’t be afraid to take a look online if you aren’t sure how a particular intersection works. If you are driving somewhere with a change in traffic pattern, or you don’t use that intersection very often, prepare accordingly. Just because you aren’t very familiar with a particular intersection doesn’t mean that you are exempt from the law! Remember: receiving a Vehicle Code 22101 CVC citation applies if you are disobeying a marked order. If the order isn’t marked, or you have no choice but or disobey it, you are innocent of this violation!



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